8 Weight Loss Factors

The Fat Loss File – 8 Weight Loss Factors

Coffee Impairs Blood Sugar Regulation In Rats

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 Regular coffee consumption increases the risk of type 2 diabetes. One mechanism might be that coffee alters the microbes in the gastrointestinal system. Researchers from the University of Calgary in Canada, in a study on rats, found that chemicals in coffee called polyphenols altered gut microbes, which changed the fat characteristics after meals. Coffee increased circulating levels of short-chain fatty acids and lowered levels of branched-chain amino acids. However, coffee caused positive changes in body composition and in sugar regulation following high-fat diets. We need more studies on the effects of coffee and caffeine on blood sugar regulation and body composition (Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry, published online January 30, 2014)

 Aerobic Exercise Helps Maintain Muscle Mass During Low-Calorie Diets

 Rapid or long-term weight-loss programs typically result in reduced muscle mass, which makes it more difficult to maintain lost weight. Weight training is recognized as the best way to promote muscle hypertrophy and prevent muscle loss during weight loss. However, aerobic exercise can also enhance muscle protein synthesis, particularly in older adults with increases in abdominal fat— according to a study of adults with visceral obesity (organ and abdominal fat). Researchers examined the effects of low-calorie diets and low-calorie diets plus aerobics on body composition. Both groups lost weight and inches, but the diet plus aerobics group was able to maintain muscle mass. People trying to lose weight should exercise and cut calories. The exercise will maintain muscle mass that will help prevent weight regain. (Obesity Facts, 7: 26-35, 2014)

Weight Loss Is One-Fourth Lean Mass

 A central goal of weight loss is to maximize fat loss and minimize lean mass loss. A standard assumption among many weight-loss experts is that during weight loss, one-fourth of the weight lost is due to loss of lean mass and three-fourths is due to fat loss. A review of literature by researchers from the Pennington Biomedical Research Center in Baton Rouge, Louisiana concluded that this rule is approximate at best. Factors such as age, physical activity, dietary composition and genetics play important roles in determining the changes in body composition during weight loss. Exercise during weight loss can prevent muscle loss at any age and change the one-fourth/three-fourths rule. (Obesity Reviews, published online January 2014)

Low Testosterone and Obesity: A Vicious Cycle

 The link between low testosterone levels in obesity is complex, which makes the problems difficult to treat. Obesity lowers testosterone but does not necessarily affect its controlling hormones in the hypothalamus, pituitary gland and gonads. However, severe obesity affects these controls. Reducing weight typically increases testosterone levels, but significant weight loss in grossly obese people is extremely difficult. Testosterone supplements can help fight obesity, but they contribute to sleep apnea and compromise fertility. Exercise improves metabolic health and might be the solution to improving testosterone control and promoting weight loss. Even in the absence of weight loss, improved fitness boosts metabolic health. (Asian Journal Andrology, published online, February 14, 2014)

Diet Plus Exercise Reduces Appetite Hormone During Weight Loss

 Exercise is an important component of weight loss because it reduces ghrelin, an appetite-control hormone secreted by the stomach. Your body thinks you are starving when you diet. It has complicated controls to keep you at your normal weight. When you diet or haven’t eaten for several hours, the stomach secretes ghrelin that turns on the hunger center in the brain to increase appetite and slow fat use. A Brazilian study found that overweight adult men and women who exercise during weight loss reduced secretion of ghrelin. Exercise also maintained resting metabolic rate, which would make it easier to prevent weight gain after prolonged dieting. (Diabetes Metabolic Syndrome Obesity: Targets Therapy, 6: 469-475, 2014)

Weight-Loss Drugs Approved by FDA

 The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved lorcaserin (sold as Belviq from Eisai Inc.) and phentermine-topiramate (sold as Qsymia from Vivus Inc.) for long-term weight loss. The drugs are designed to work with a diet and exercise program. The products were approved after undergoing a one-year clinical trial in which patients lost more weight on the drugs than on a placebo (fake drug). Both drugs were associated with a weight loss of about seven percent during the study. The drugs are not approved in Europe because of side effects such as valvular heart disease, increased heart rate, anxiety, insomnia and metabolic acidosis. These are the first weight-loss drugs to receive FDA approval in many years. It remains to be seen if they will have a significant impact on obesity in America. (Journal of American Medical Association Internal Medicine, published online February 10, 2014)

Obesity and Pollutants Contribute to Whole-Body Inflammation

 Inflammation is the body’s immediate response to damage to tissues and cells by germs, chemicals or physical injury that can lead to inadequate tissue repair and degenerative diseases. A review of literature by scientists from the University of Ottawa in Canada concluded that obesity and environmental pollutants combined to increase inflammation in the body. Obesity results in poorly oxygenated sections of the fat mass. Many environmental pollutants are fat soluble, so they collect in fat— particularly in people with a lot of fat. These factors increase chemicals such as tumor necrosis factor-alpha, interleukin-6 and monocyte chemotactic protein-1. This review highlighted the importance of the interaction of disease processes in the body and pollutants in the environment. (Obesity Reviews, 15: 19-28, 2014)

Frequent Fish Consumption Does Not Promote Weight Loss

Many nutrition experts recommend frequent fish consumption for weight loss. Omega-3 fatty acid supplements are also thought to promote weight control. A 12-month study by Australian scientists showed no difference in weight loss between people consuming low-calorie diets plus one gram per day of olive oil, versus low-calorie diets emphasizing fish two times a day, or the same diet supplemented with omega-3 fatty acids. All groups lost about 10 pounds and reduced fat percentage by about one percent. There is no advantage to frequent fish consumption in a dietary program compared to a low-calorie diet containing a variety of foods. (BMC Public Health, 13: 1231, 2013)

This content was originally published here.

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